Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra retires today. Addressing his farewell function in New Delhi yesterday, Justice Dipak Misra said Indian judiciary has been strongest judiciary in the world having the capability to handle the mind-boggling number of cases.
He said it is the most robust institution in the world. Justice Misra said the independence of justice will stand erect as there is collegiality among the brother and sister judges of the Supreme Court.
He said any kind of craftsmanship can not impact the independence of the judiciary. Justice Misra also said he judged people not by their history, but by their activities and perspectives.
Unlike many of his predecessors, though, some of the landmark judgments delivered by CJI Misra arguably came at a time when their political relevance was much sharper than at any other time.
Here are some important quotes which he made while presenting verdicts in various cases:
1. CJI Dipak Misra while decriminalising section 377 said “Section 377 is irrational, arbitrary and incomprehensible as it fetters the right to equality for LGBT community…LGBT community possesses the same equality as other citizens,”
2. In one of his judgments, CJI Misra had said no to marriage as a compromise between a rape accused and the victim.
3. While upholding the death sentence of four convicts in the December 2012 Nirbhaya gangrape case. Justice Misra authoring the judgment had said, “If ever a case called for hanging, this was it.”
4. On the verdict regarding the immediate arrest for dowry harassment, he said “Section 498A (dowry harassment) of IPC protects gender justice and rights. There should not be any kind of cruel treatment of women… But the liberty of husbands is also a factor… Whether both can be juxtaposed or reconciled?”
5. While defending the rights of women on the issue of female genital mutilation, he asked senior advocate AM Singhvi, appearing for Bohra Muslim forum who were favouring the practice of female genital mutilation, “You think in favour husbands, girls should go through this practice?”
6. Authorising Passive Euthanasia-For right to die with the dignity he said, “Human beings have the right to die with dignity.”
7. While declaring Section 497 IPC and Section 198 of Code of Criminal Procedure dealing with the prosecution of offences against marriage as unconstitutional, CJI said, “Equality is the governing principle of a system and that a husband is not the master of the wife.” On the same case, he further said, “Adultery can be ground for civil issues including dissolution of marriage but it cannot be a criminal offence”